He and Gregory promptly headed out to mark the trail that I said was missing a marker to advise which way to go......
I showed up at the widely advertised (taking sarcasm from the race site that is so far underground, you’d be at the core of the earth) Nougat6ix at Lynn Woods on Saturday 10 minutes before the start at 7:00. Simple race, 50K (4 loops) or 100K (8 for the mentally bored). Bring your own, no race entry fee (sorry, $1.00 for International runners), invited only sort of event. Go ahead read the site, look around. It is hilarious.
A group of twenty or so took off at 7:02 and Stephen and I took off after 30 seconds. We got into the lead at the top of the first hill. It was very casual and we were taking it easy. Heads were on a swivel, keeping alert for white ground arrows on top of leaves or orange streamers hanging from branches. The pace was conversational. Miles went by, the sun went away and the wind picked up. I waited for Stephen as he needed a potty break after 6 miles. I got a little anxious at the as we went by Stone Tower and opened the stride a little. No marker at the bottom of it was concerning. I went right, Stephen followed, and I corrected my error after 10 seconds, noting common sense that I had almost 1.5 miles to reach the start. So I turned back and ran up to Steel Tower and then to the start which gave me just over 10 miles. Stephen fell way back, a minute or so, when I reached where we started. I took a Gel and Red Bull Seltzer mix that I planted at the aid station.
Stephen was cooked so I headed out to the right side for the 5.5. It took me on new trail that I never saw before. It was very technical so I just rolled with it getting out to Rt.1 wondering where the GAC crew was along with Linda Fitzpatrick. They are usually in for the ultra races. Well, guess who I bumped into 10 minutes later. Yup. Linda and a few friends. I grabbed her hand, noted a story of a hunter crying that she recently shared, and ran off. A power line or two went over head and found my way heading back to the start or in my case, my finish. I was pretty tired. 15.64 miles and 2:11:39. The effort is a DNF because I and most others did not do the minimum 50K. It fits the sarcastic, underground, non-commercialization of the super secret event. Huge props to those tackling each loop twice. The 5.5 mile loop on the right side is as technical as it will get in Lynn Woods. Once was enough for these bones. Twice and I would end up breaking one or two.
|Gregory Esbitt, co-race director and my tired bones|
Photo taken by a kind soul with my phone